Forrest City set to break ground on three solar power plants

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 923 views 

The city of Forrest City and Scenic Hill Solar will host a groundbreaking ceremony for the first of the three solar power plant sites in Forrest City on Monday (June 22) at 10:30 a.m. The public private partnership to build three solar power plants to provide electricity to the city was announced in December 2019.

When completed, the three solar plants will total 3.46 MW DC of capacity and produce 100% renewable energy for the Forrest City government and municipal operations. The ceremony will be held on a site a half mile east of Woodruff Electric’s headquarters on Eldridge Road. The city owned site is adjacent to Belleville Shoe Company and will host a power plant to provide all of the city’s electricity needs in Woodruff Electric Cooperative service territory.

“We’re excited to begin construction on this cutting-edge venture for Our Forrest City and the entire community,” said Forrest City Mayor Cedric Williams. “This project has been in the planning stages for many months and to see it come to life will be a tangible example of our efforts at investing in sustainable growth opportunities for our future and becoming more efficient with our citizens’ tax dollars. The project will also have a multimillion dollar impact on our local economy at a time when the global economy is undergoing massive turmoil. We are excited to put Arkansans back to work in Forrest City and to transform the way we power our community.”

“We are excited about our partnership with Forrest City to build solar power plants to provide 100 percent solar electricity for Forrest City’s governmental operations,” said Bill Halter, CEO of Scenic Hill Solar.

The three solar power plants totaling 3.46 MW will produce over 5,882,000 kWh of electricity in the first year of operation and over 164,244,037 kWh of electricity during the next 30 years. The plants are projected to produce enough electricity to satisfy all of Forrest City’s governmental operations’ electricity consumption.

The project will reduce carbon emissions by over 115,952 metric tons which is the equivalent of: driving over 289 million fewer passenger car miles or eliminating the burning of over 89 million pounds of coal or providing over 17,000 homes electricity for one year.